Dog training: breedism at the SPCA?

My wife and I recently signed our dog up for group training at the SPCA here in Hong Kong. We were a bit apprehensive when we registered since the people we talked to on the phone were critical about our dog’s diet. Since they use food treats in the training, they wanted to know what we feed him. We feed him all raw and have no intention of switching him to dry food. They were kind of critical of that. No surprise there. Hill’s Science Diet is blazened across the top of their website.

So we were supposed to go on Thursday for the first session where the dog’s owners are given some pre-training. The first full training session was supposed to be this coming Sunday. Today, the SPCA folks called my wife and told her that no other dogs had been signed up for the class Lucky was to attend. That was a bit strange. When we signed up, they gave the impression that there were already other dogs registered for that class. THEN, the asshole on the phone said “the other three classes will be full of pure-bred dogs like golden retrievers, so your dog shouldn’t attend them” and then belatedly added “oh, and the reason he can’t attend those classes is because they are full.” The guy then offered to return our money. Only after my wife asked did he tell her about training courses that would be held a month later.

I’m not sure what to think of these people. I was already dreading the lectures about how great a dry food diet is. When my wife was on the phone with them, they constantly referred to our dog as a za2zhong3; HK people generally consider that a bit rude. Now it seems that they don’t want to bother with training a two year old mixed breed. Size was not the problem. Lucky is a big boy for a Tanggou at about 50 pounds. Has anybody else had experiences with the RSPCA that left the impression of breedism? Should we bother with them? Should we find a one-to-one trainer? Or should we just try to train him a bit ourselves? I don’t care about tricks and stuff. I just want him to be more comfortable around people and to be able to walk him off leash.

I’ll do some digging on your behalf. Give me a couple of days. :wink:


I can’t help with alternative courses, but I’d recommend humour as your best reaction.

It’s amazing that people like this exist outside of Best of Show, but apparently they do. Laughing at their snobery might do the trick.

So much for the Hong Kong SPCA. I suggest you tell them where they can stuff their dog training and find another organisation or do it yourself. Maoman can give you a few tips.